This weekend, we did an exercise. To make you realize how you have things appropriated in your own mind. I’m sketchy about the exacts… but we were asked to fold a letter sized piece of paper in to 16 squares and then tear them apart. On 5 of the papers, we were asked to write the name of 5 important people in our lives. On 3 of the papers – three things we liked to do most… On 2 of the papers – 2 things I’m most passionate about. On 3 of the papers –three things possessions that are dear to me. On 3 of the papers — three dreams that I have.
3 Things I like most:
2 things I’m passionate about
3 possessions dear to me
My grandmother’s Photo album
My mom’s Madonna pendant
My engagement ring
3 Dreams of mine
Owning a house
Paying for my children’s future endeavors
The workshop facilitator brought us through a scenario which starts off with me becoming ill with some kind of incurable disease… and it takes me through the twists and turns of having to give up things from each category. She told us “ball it up and throw it away”. By the end of the exercise… I was left with my Grandmother’s photo album and God… and tears. Many tears. The exercise of throwing away the things that I loved or dreamed about left me completely empty. To the point that when one of the workshop assistants came around to throw away the garbage… I clung to my little pile of crumpled papers. Unable to throw them away — again.
It made me think a lot… For the first time in a long time I asked myself… “What am I doing?” I was at a career symposium this past week where I was one of the speakers. They wanted me to talk about what I do. I ended up talking about how I got there… I have a speech predrafted for College students. My message: Don’t rush to the stop light. Take your time… decide what you WANT… don’t rush on account feeling like you HAVE to choose something. A positive, encouraging message to the Undecideds — as I was … And that if you’re 50 or 80 and decide you want to change… feel free. What do I want to do, I asked myself in front of them? “I want to be a stay at home mom.” I said it proudly. One person in the audience applauded me outwardly. “I’ve empowered myself to be able to work from home with my choice of profession.” Nothing is more important to me than being able to be there to see my kids off to school… be there when they come home and have hot meals waiting… help them with their homework…. make sure they have clean clothing… tuck them in at night… be there to help with first steps and scraped knees and bullies and first crushes and big tests and broken hearts and major leaps. To BE THERE. That’s my dream. That is what I’m passionate about. But what happens… if I can’t do that. If I can’t be a mother… then what?? And it is a serious reality that I may not… with the RH Factor and the fibroids… and lord knows what else is lurking in this timebomb… What then?
Then, talking to MJ this morning, I expressed how I was about to look into the 401K program at the job now… it’s too risky to try and shift around now what with the wedding and house shopping… after 4 years in the company, I guess it’s time to sit back. But I felt like I said “put the final nail in the coffin”. That’s what I felt like I had admitted to thinking about doing. Then talking again at the end of the day… he went on about this GREAT accomplishment he had reached today. The thing that if he did nothing else in his realm of work, it would define him and he would be proud of for all of his days. His contribution to the world of work that he loves.
So… what am I doing? What will my contribution be? What is my purpose?
How much easier would life be to live… if there wasn’t an answer to that question?